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Signal Found From Lost Indonesian Satellite

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Mon Aug 13, 2012 5:51 pm via: RIA Novosti
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Contact has been made with an Indonesian telecommunications satellite that went missing following a failed launch last week, a Russian rocket firm said on Monday.

The Telkom 3 and another satellite, Russia’s Express MD2, failed to reach their target orbit due to a failure of the Russian Proton-M rocket’s upper stage.

“Contact with the satellite has been established and is being sustained,” the Reshetnev rocket company, which built the craft, said in a press release. “The satellite is oriented toward the sun. A positive energy balance is being maintained onboard. The craft’s solar panels have been opened.”

The satellite could be used for “additional tests” of the firm’s “new space platform,” Reshetnev director Nikolai Testoyedov told RIA Novosti. The firm “will take care of the controlled maneuvering of the satellite off orbit” if Indonesia’s PT Telkom, which owes the craft, gives permission for the tests.

The platform, Express-1000H, is being used for the development of the Amos-5 satellite, Testoyedov said.

PT Telkom spent some $200 million to purchase and launch the Telkom-3, the Jakarta Post newspaper reported.

Last week, a source in the government inquiry group into the August 6 launch said a fault in the Briz-M upper stage’s fuel pipe was to blame for its failure.

The Briz-M’s fuel pipe might have been “mechanically damaged” or held some foreign objects, the source said.

The failed launch has prompted the Russian space agency Roscosmos to suspend all Proton-M launches until the inquiry group states its findings.

Copyright 2012 RIA Novosti. All rights reserved.

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